Stress is a completely normal human response. In fact, when you experience stress, you are experiencing your body protecting you. Usually, we experience stress in situations where we face immediate danger. Our body sets off our adrenaline to encourage us to act in a way that will avoid that danger. However, nowadays, all too many people experience stress as a response to things that aren’t immediately dangerous. It’s important that if you’re experiencing stress regularly, you take action to help yourself deal with it. Here’s some more information that should help you to achieve this!
Why Avoid Stress?
Of course, we all naturally want to avoid stress. Being stressed isn’t an enjoyable experience. When we are stressed we can feel overwhelmed, uncomfortable or low. But there are more reasons to avoid stress than this alone. Stress can have physical impacts on our health and wellbeing. These include headaches, muscle tension and fatigue caused by sleep deprivation. Stress can also cause use to experience emotional consequences. These can vary from anxiety to restlessness, irritability, sadness, procrastination and more. The combination of these different symptoms of stress can also alter our behaviour, causing emotional outbursts, issues with eating and appetite or issues with socialisation.
First and foremost, it’s important to note that if you’re experiencing stress regularly, or you’re facing extreme stress, you should visit your doctor or another qualified medical professional immediately. Your stress could be a symptom of an underlying mental health condition that you haven’t had diagnosed yet. A doctor will be able to talk to you about your experience and your symptoms and can diagnose any underlying conditions if you have any. They can then direct you on the right path to treatment – whether that’s therapy, medication or anything else. They can also suggest a number of sources of support. Remember you are never alone. There are mental health charities, support groups, helplines and much more available around the clock.
Identifying and Tackling Causes of Stress
A good next step is to identify and tackle the causes of your stress. For some of us, the causes of our stress are clear. It might be work, it might be familial responsibilities, it might be debt, it might be exam stress – the list goes on. If you can easily identify what’s causing your stress, it’s then important to tackle it. Talk to your workplace about unreasonable workloads or deadlines. Establish boundaries with friends and family. Find ways to chip away at your debt. Organise your time and calendar. Even the smallest steps can make all the difference.
Stress Busting Activities and Habits
There are countless stress busting activities and habits out there and the ones that will best suit you will depend on you and your individual needs and interests. Here are a few popular options that you might like to take into consideration.
Massage is a naturally calming experience. A qualified massage therapist will rub and knead your muscles and joints, relieving tension and pain. This is a deeply relaxing experience and can be found at most spas or specialist massage providers. There are countless types of massage to choose from, so research different styles before booking in.
Many people find a warm drink soothing. But many hot drinks contain caffeine, which can enhance feelings of stress. Instead, why not consider calming teas that have been specially crafted to soothe stress. This could include green tea, chamomile tea, peppermint tea and more.
Getting enough sleep can have such a hugely positive impact on your overall health and wellbeing. Stress is a common symptom of sleep deprivation. You may be surprised to know that many people are chronically sleep deprived and don’t even realise it. Make sure to get seven to eight hours’ worth of sleep every night. There are a number of things you can do to give yourself the best chances of this. Cut out caffeine. Put your devices away before going to bed. Make sure you have quality bedding. Block out natural light during your sleep hours. Whatever it takes, you need to find what works for you to help you nod off at a reasonable time each evening.
Mindfulness is a practice that allows you to observe things and let them pass without judgement. All too often, many of us find ourselves stressing out about things we can’t impact or change. Sometimes, the easiest thing to do is accept things and move on. Mindfulness can help with this! Some people like to practice breathing exercises. Some sit in silence with their eyes closed. Some simply just want to wind down and relax.
Do What You Enjoy
You should make sure that you do what you enjoy. All too often, we end up spending a whole lot of time doing what we have to do. Going to work. Looking after those we’re responsible for. Exercise. Social commitments. The list goes on. But you need to make sure that you make time for what you enjoy too. Whether that’s arts and crafts with materials from Glue Guns Direct, going to language classes, relaxing in the bath or anything else. Just make sure to take some you time!
Believe it or not, exercise can help to alleviate stress. While you might not automatically feel like heading to the gym when you’re feeling pent up or stressed out, it could be a good idea. If you’re completely adverse to the gym, why not consider alternative exercise options that you might find more enjoyable?
These are just a few of the basics when it comes to stress, its impact on your life and different ways to go about alleviating it. Hopefully, some of the information will help you to make changes to your day to day life that can really add to your day to day experience. Try some out and see what works for you! What’s most important is lowering your stress levels and leading a more relaxed existence!